With social media being more present in society than ever before, it is now becoming evident that personal social media profiles could potentially have an impact on job prospects. From a recent survey by CareerBuilder, it was found that 70% of employers are reviewing candidates social media profiles before interviewing and hiring. This new element to recruitment can have both a positive and negative impact on your employability.
With social media platforms being a popular place for people to expose their personal lives, employers are now reviewing candidates profiles to discover more about what they get up to outside of work to form a clearer idea of a candidates personality, interests and values.
Although this is nothing major to worry about, it is important that you are aware of how this could positively or negatively impact your employability. Follow our list of considerations below:
If you are concerned about employers knowing too much about your social life, there is an option to set your social media accounts to Private. Doing so will only allow potential employers to see your profile name, display image and in some cases a description or work/education history. Remember, with these elements of your profile still being visible, we recommend keeping these professional and appropriate.
Whether you decide to make your social media accounts private or not, your profile is going to be a key element for potential employers to browse. A social media profile can tell you a lot about an individual, especially on sites like Facebook where you can identify your previous work place or education history. Remember to keep this 100% honest. If you are being dishonest about your employment or education history on Facebook, your employer may have a few questions about what is written on your CV.
Personal Opinions and Interests
By having a social media account that isn't set to private, potential employers will be able to view all of your previous posts, shares and possible likes. Be considerate towards whether any of your previous posts or engagements are controversial, discriminative or offensive. Whilst social media is a place to express your personal opinions, values and beliefs; it may be best to keep these conversations and comments private to protect yourself. Think about whether you would say those comments in front of a potential employer at an interview - if the answer is no then reconsider posting it online.
Another thing that employers will be considering when reviewing potential candidates social media profiles is productivity. If they can see that candidates are using social media for most of their day, they may see this as a negative. Depending on whether social media usage is required for your job role, using social media platforms during working hours may also contribute towards a negative perception. Remember, employers will only want to hire candidates who are proven to be productive and motivated during working hours.
Positive impacts of social media
Don't think that all of the points above prove how you should hide away from potential employers on social media. With social media being an open space to represent yourself, why not use it to your advantage?
A great place to do this would be LinkedIn. This platform is specifically focused on your professional life. We suggest making a LinkedIn account and using it to connect with professionals who have similar working interests to yourself. Showing that you are engaging in content that relates to your desired job role or sector will really impress your employer. Click here for a guide on how to use LinkedIn effectively.
Additionally, if you are looking to gain a role in the creative industry think about making a professional account on Instagram. This visual platform can be a great place to display your previous work and engage with content that inspires you. This also adds an additional place for you to show off your portfolio of work alongside a written CV.